What to order at Francolini's in New Orleans
Ever since Francolini's popped up on my radar earlier this year, I've been wanting to get my hands on one of their sandwiches. I finally made that happen.
The big picture: If you have an Instagram account in New Orleans, chances are you knew this new Italian deli was headed for an opening on Tchoupitoulas Street.
- In the months before Francolini's finally opened its storefront, its sandwich-slinging pop-ups routinely sold out.
- Now that owner Tara Francolini and her partner, former Longway Tavern chef Cesar Nunez, have regular hours, that hasn't changed, thanks to the crowded, steady line snaking through the deli and out the door.
- Plans are for the deli to offer meats by the pound eventually, but for now, it's all sandwiches and some grocery items, like pastas and condiments.
What I ordered: The Gandolfini on seeded bread.
- The cold sandwich comes stacked with hot soppressata, fresh mozzarella, spicy olive salad, arugula and a Calabrian chili vinaigrette.
- I'm not proud of the way I wolfed down the salty, spicy combination, but I was pleasantly surprised at the Ayu Bakery bread's soft-but-sturdy delivery that prevented any ingredient smush as I chomped away.
Of note: The deli has expanded its hours since opening, and we were told during our Friday lunch-rush visit that, if your goal is to avoid crowds, it's best to come by around 2pm.
- Or you can skip the line entirely by ordering online.
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